Disable Outlook Call Handling In ShoreTel Director

One of the more helpful, or not helpful features of the ShoreTel phone system is Outlook Calendar integration. I’ve worked with the ShoreTel phone system since roughly 2007 in various capacities and this is one of those features that either works, or doesn’t depending on version of Office, ShoreTel, and phase the moon is in. Typically I’ve never really had anyone that actually wanted it so it never got installed on purpose. However, I’ve had some people ask about this particular feature so I thought I’d post a quick fix here on how to disable it on the server-side.

The complaint is typically the phone won’t ring for mysterious reasons even though everything is configured properly. You’ll often hear that the phone stops ringing at 9:00 but then will start again at 10:00 on Tuesdays.

The instructions below are particularly helpful for people in remote areas where it may be difficult to RDP into their machines to uninstall Calendar Integration.

How to Remotely Disable Automatic Outlook Call Handing in ShoreWare Director

Step 1 – Log into ShoreWare Director

Step 2- Go to your user’s Personal Options.

Step 3 – If the box that is labeled “Outlook Automated Call Handing” is checked, simply uncheck it and hit save.

The user’s phone should now ring, even if they have something scheduled in Outlook.

Note – You should be able to change what call handling mode ShoreTel Communicator goes into with Calendar Integration installed in each individual appointment. You may have to go into Outlook’s add-ins manager and physically enable the add-ins if you want the feature to work.

 

Editing Personal Call Handling Rules For Other Users in ShoreTel

This is one of those guides that requires some knowledge of relational databases and the confidence to edit your ShoreWare Director Database without screwing it up.

You’ll need some software on your ShoreTel Server to do this. I prefer HeidiSQL but you can use any MySQL GUI that you prefer. You can even install PHPMyAdmin if you want. The hardcore can just use the shell. The relevant database that you want to connect to is on port 4308, it’s called “shoreware”. The username is root, and the password is “shorewaredba”. You can find all this information with a quick Google Search, the ShoreTel forums, Reddit, and even on the ShoreTel server itself if you poke around enough so I’m not terribly concerned giving it away here.

The annoying thing about a vanilla ShoreTel server is there isn’t any way to do Nuisance Call Blocking except Personalized Call Handling Rules on each individual Communicator. There’s also no way to add new rules to a user’s Communicator in the Director. Outside of some third-party software I’ve heard of, or some extra software from ShoreTel you have to either walk a user through this process or do it on their computer yourself. That changes now.

Editing Someone Else’s Personalized Call Handling Rules On Your ShoreTel Server

Step 1 – Create the rule on your own ShoreTel Communicator. You do this in the Options Menu under “Personalized Call Handling”. Just make the exact rule you want on the other user’s Communicator. Please note I’m using ShoreTel version 14.2 as the example.

Step 2 – Remote into your server and fire up your mySQL editor and connect to the configuration database.

Step 3 – Look for the table ecrrules. Your rule will probably be the newest rule in there, but you can look at the tables ecractions and ecrnumbers to verify which rule is yours. The field “RuleID” is the foreign key that ties them all together.

Step 4 – Once you’ve determined which rule is yours, simply change the extension in the UserDN field from your extension to the user who needs the rule’s extension. HeidiSQL is nice enough to give you a list when you click on it.

Step 5 – Verify in Director under “Personal Options” of the user that the rule shows up.

Step 6 – The rule is in the new user’s Personal Options now. If not check to make sure you put the right extension in the ECRULES table.

If you want to edit the rules you can change the fields. Simple things like the phone number or destination number are easy to edit under the ecractions and ecrnumbers table. I would not change the parameters of the rule or anything like that. If you need to change what the rule does, I would delete it in Director, make a new one that does what you need and do steps 1-6 above. For instance, if you mistyped the caller ID the rule needs to check for you can change that in the database, if you want it to forward to an inside line not an outside line, I’d start over since doing that would require changing several things in multiple tables and it’s easy to get confused.

If you are not familiar with how relational databases work, stay away from this. It’s pretty simple but you can mess something up fairly easily if you aren’t careful.